tv The Eighties CNN June 19, 2021 9:00pm-10:00pm PDT
and it has to be affirmed. we will be doing for tv what fm did for radio. >> there are some that have accused your videos of being soft porn. >> we like to call them tastefully smutty. >> what are your dreams? >> to rule the world. >> michael jackson is the man of the '80s. >> all beat and talk. it's rap music. >> heavy metal. it glorifies sex and violence. it hates authority and adolescent boys love it. >> this weird, beastly presentation, that was birthed in the pit of hell. ♪
>> world has reacted with shock and grief to the first rock and roll a assassination. >> it was like, in one moment, the '60s and the '70s got murdered. >> his life has given more love than most men and women on the face of this earth. we're here to prove that love is not dead, even though john is. >> you know, you start the decade with the death of a beatle. you don't really know where you are going to go from that point, you know, culturally or musically. >> for a while, it seemed there was nothing new on the horizon. announcing the latest achievement in home entertainment. the power of sight. video. the power of sound, stereo. mtv. music television. >> we are so excited about this new concept in tv. we'll be doing, for tv, what fm did for radio. >> at the time, the world was saying we don't think anybody's going to watch videos, over and over. but we knew we had something special.
>> mtv made you feel like those artists were in the room. you had a personal concert, all day. >> when you have the rotation of, say, maybe, a hundred different videos being rotated, over and over, on mtv. they do a great job of exposing new acts. >> ahead of the curve. they had a ton of videos in their inventory and that was what paved the way for this accidental second-british invasion. >> if you look at some of the groups on the popular-music charts in america today. you can't help asking where, on earth, did they come from? well, the answer is the same, today, as it was two decades ago. they come from britain. >> the beatles. >> got to understand, they were 20 years ago. we are a new generation. a new -- a new wave.
♪ you were working as a waitress in a cocktail bar when i met you ♪ >> the early 1980s, new wave is used to describe these sleek, dressy, cool bands that are coming out of england. ♪ don't you want me, baby ♪ >> british artists, all, understood how to use visuals in a way that, i think, american artists didn't, necessarily, get that quickly. ♪ do you really want to hurt me ♪ ♪ do you really want to make me cry ♪ >> "do you really want to hurt me" is a good song. it's a song old people like and young people like. so i think the proof is in the pudding. buy it and eat it. >> mtv actually met with durand-durand managers. and their managers are the ones that went to the band members and said, look.
we really need to up the ante with these clips. you know, we need to give this channel something they've never seen, before. >> there are some that have accused your videos of being soft porn. >> well, excuse me. we like to call them tastefully smutty. ♪ >> when i first met duran-duran, they were saying they thought they looked like rock stars, so why not become rock stars? >> why do you think we're so popular over there? >> well, there's a tradition that goes back over the past-20 years from the days of the
beatles where british bands seem to be better at it than americans. >> the police have sold 4 million albums in one year. rolling stone chose them as best-new band of the year. taking note of the swirling, dreamy, soaring quality of the sound. >> was incredible to see them. and i couldn't believe what i was hearing out of three people. i was shocked. >> i, once, read that you are called the pink floyd of the '80s. what do you think of that? >> we're not, at all. we're just -- we're the cure of the '80s. >> the holy trinity of alternative-british music is the cure. depeche mode. and the smiths. all three of them started out as these fringe bands. that, by the end of the '80s, were selling out stadiums.
>> computer programmers? or musicians? >> i say none of that. >> what are you, then? >> bank robbers. ♪ how does it feel to treat me like you do ♪ >> in the uk, disco did not suck. it never sucked. and bands, like new order, combined it with the new-synthesizer sound. and they gave us these incredible songs that got us out on the dance floor. >> i like what is happening in dance places now. over the last year, i think the music is becoming very healthy.
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you had to be a performance artist, as well as musician. >> the intelligent ones recognize that it's a marriage, between the visual artist and the musician, at this point. the man or the woman, who finds the right combination will take it all. ♪ put on your red shoes and dance the blues ♪ >> when david and i decided that we were going to work together. it was pretty clear, to me, that david wanted to make a commercial album. like, you know, now i'm going to go make a pop record. but it was going to be his version of pop. >> my songs always tend to be impressionistic or even have a surreal quality to them. and this album is the first time that i have really try today adapt to a die dactic kind of approach to some writing.
>> artists in the '80s and david bowie, for that matter, realized if you want to make it, you got to approximate on mtv. >> but there is one group that's not happy with mtv. many black artists who have been told their music doesn't fit the format. >> that's what's happening. here being sat in the back of the bus, television style. and there are other cable shows that form, they are going to try it. >> mtv doesn't exclude black acts. what mtv does exclude is music that's not rock and roll. >> mtv came out with no consideration on how to infuse black music into their mix. >> i am just floored by the fact that there's so many -- so few black artists featured on it. why is that? >> we have to try and do what we think not only new york and los angeles will appreciate. but also, some town in the midwest that will be scared to death by prince or a string of other black faces. >> interesting.
okay. thank you very much. >> when are we going to see anybody of color on mtv? because you said music television. when are you going to start covering all genres of music? >> music has no color. and it shouldn't have color. and i don't believe in that. what i do, i don't want it labeled black or white. i want it labeled as music. >> 1983, motown has this big-tv special, motown's 25th anniversary. at that time, "thriller" is out and "thriller" is doing well. but michael jackson couldn't get "billie jean" on tv. >> when the rest of the world was going crazy and he can't get on mtv? michael jackson? come on.
>> when he does that moonwalk, he was sitting on the couch. b.i.d. by the end of it, you were on the floor in front of the tv. you couldn't believe what you were seeing. >> i would say that the moonwalk was, really, one of the first-viral moments that affected rock history. the next week, "thriller" started selling a million copies a week. >> he is so sexy and so gorgeous. >> he's exciting. >> michael jackson is the man of the '80s. >> mtv starts to get pressure from cbs records, which was michael jackson's label. >> rock and roll, in itself, really, was the thing that broke a lot of rules. and when you are very successful, you try to make your own rules, occasionally. >> as the story goes, cbs essentially said, we will pull every other artist we have on mtv if you don't play this. they had to be, essentially, blackmailed into doing it. ♪ it doesn't matter who's wrong or right, just beat it ♪ >> he was the artist that mtv
really needed. they didn't know they needed him. but boy, when we started to see those michael jackson videos, it was just unbelievable. >> then, there was the domino effect. suddenly, you see prince videos from warner brothers do the same thing. ♪ party like it's 1999 ♪ >> prince wasn't just a -- a -- materializing out of nowhere. where was he before this video was done? >> prince was a huge star on black-radio stations. i mean, people, he had a really underground cultvil following a he was a very sexy, hot performer. >> prince loved the idea that he was taking his punk-funk music. and turning it on to a white audience. and that wouldn't have happened, if not for mtv. ♪ this is what it sounds like when the doves cry ♪ >> when i was younger, i always said that, one day, i was going
to play all kinds of music. and not be judged for the color of my skin but the quality of my work. >> prince had a great androgyny. he blurred the gender line. he sings, he writes, he plays. every time i see him, it's just like, really? okay. i quit. >> when he plays guitar, it's just part of his body, in a way that i've never really seen, before. and it's not contrived. it's just -- it's just happening. >> what was his music? was it r and b? it was just grab you by the throat and balls pop.
♪ into the river ♪ >> at this point, a lot of it is about being there, which is why we haven't done too much of the video thing. a lot of it is it allows too much distance. like, what our band is about is about breaking down distance. >> bruce was all about credibility and intelligence and integrity. so, how would he translate his music and his attitude toward the world to, what seemed like, this frivolous world of the music video? bruce is not going to be next to a winking model on a sailboat. he ends up doing essentially an in-concert video starring a then-unknown courtney cox. it's, like, this weird re-creation of something that, organically, happens in a bruce springsteen concert.
if there was an artist in the '80s who transcended the music video, he is the one guy who didn't actually need to do great-music videos to, still, be a great artist. he's bruce springsteen. it was great music. ♪welcome back to that same old place♪ ♪that you laughed about♪ ♪well, the names have all changed♪ ♪since you hung around♪ welcome back, america. it sure is good to see you. living with metastatic breast cancer means being relentless. because every day matters. and having more of them is possible with verzenio. the only one of its kind proven to help you live significantly longer when taken with fulvestrant, regardless of menopause. verzenio + fulvestrant is for hr+, her2- metastatic breast cancer that has progressed after hormone therapy.
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david bowie, mick jagger, billy joel, rod stewart. all famous, all rich, and all men. rock and roll has been pretty much dominated by men, until the last-few years. >> pat benatar is hot. very hot. three albums in the past-three years. all, million sellers. and the latest album hit the top of the charts, in just one month. her style is defiant, raucous, tough, and very sexy. ♪ we are young, heartache to heartache ♪ >> it appears to me that the one on stage is what i would picture a modern woman to be. someone who is aggressive and soft, at the same time. has a lot of strength and conviction. and can look good and still have brains. >> you would think that, in the era of music becoming a visual form, more than ever, that it would all be about
objectification. but there were a lot of strong women on that video screen. >> meet the darlings of l.a.'s new-music scene. the go-go's. unlike earlier-girl groups, the go-gos right their own songs and may their own instruments. >> that was as punk rock as it got, for me. to see girls up there, you know, not just singing backup. or not just like standing in some cool outfit in front of a band. like, they were the band. >> while the go-go's have always managed to look like they are having fun, they are to be taken seriously. they are the first-female group, ever, to have a number-one album. and they are at the top of a list of female-rock stars, whose
impact within the industry is stronger than ever. >> i thought her voice was extraordinary. and cindy was a very good visual-content creator. i mean, those videos were so colorful and fun. >> march the 31st. it's also a monday. some of you might consider it a manic monday. you'd be interested in knowing there is a hit song by the same name. we are joined by the architect of that song, the bengals. you guys are very hot, yes? >> when the bengals came out, everyone was like, oh, it's like another go-go's. the bangles were like, uh-uh, we're not the new go-go's, we'rwe're the new beatles. >> lot of people call that a '60s sound.
do you think so? >> we don't consciously go in, it just seems to be the way the songs end up sounding. ♪ just another manic monday, wish it were sunday ♪ >> there is always a certain amount of people who will never take women, as a group, seriously. >> it's run by a very chauvinistic, i imagine, recording industry. >> re concentrate on the music. you know, we don't really worry about those things. we just keep writing songs. >> i think there was a little bit of an attitude like, they're okay for chicks. they can play okay, for girls. we didn't understand why our gender mattered. or why it defined us. >> people magazine, this week, says it will take an act of congress to keep this woman from becoming a megastar. whitney houston. >> whether she was doing a dance song or she was doing a ballad.
it kind of stopped you in your tracks because you couldn't believe one woman could be blessed with that much. with the looks and the talent. >> this lady started out as a dancer. went to new york. went to paris. worked with bands. came back as a single. and is she hot? this is madonna. >> if you saw madonna then, she looked just like the girls who hung out at a club called the funhouse. all the girls there had the mesh thing. and they had the boots. and it was kind of a mix of new-wave punk, with this other dance sensibility. i think madonna was able to use that core of dance music and use the style of the streets that were going on. and evolve that, into a pop career. >> we are a couple of weeks into the new year. what do you hope will happen, not only in 1984 but, for the
rest of your professional life? what are your dreams? >> to rule the world. >> all the sudden, there was girls around that had the gloves with the fingers cut out of it and the hair wrapped up in the net and wearing the short skirts. there was like hundreds thoufzs of jewish girls across country wearing crucifixes because of madonna. >> she acts like a different attitude that no one else has. >> she dresses how she wants. acts how she wants. she does what she wants. >> i think her appeal is that she is feminine. she is herself. she is sexual. but she's strong! she's an individual woman. >> madonna understood the mtv phenomenon. she understood the vibe and the look and the sound. it, all, came together with her.
>> everyone underestimates you. you keep giving them little surprises. if they get you, all, in one glance, then what's going to make them look again? >> with madonna sang "like a virgin" and started rolling on the ground. people thought it was a career-ending moment for her. >> in this wedding dress. rolling around on the floor. it kind of stopped everybody, in their tracks. and everyone's thinking, what is she doing? and why is she doing it? but literally, by the next morning, she's the biggest star in the world. >> madonna had no doubt. she was like, this is happening. get out of the way. feather-soft brush.ring fd for voluptuous volume and intense length. lash paradise by l'oréal paris.
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in the '80s, the videos were so expensive and so complicated. and you had to wear things that you would never dream of wearing, before. and at fisrst, it was a lot of fun to really get dressed up and pull on that corset and wear tons of makeup and create big-huge hair. >> you had to have that sex-hair kind of thing, you know? i'm coming out of a gold mold.
anne has a welding iron and she's just like amazon welder woman, or something. >> we felt lost in the theater of it. it got to the point, where the videos were more important than the songs. >> it did feel like i can't steer the ship, anymore. where is it going? you know? where are we headed? >> i think heavy metal is -- is the true rock and roll of the '80s. and rock and roll was basically music made by people, who were thinking with their crotches. >> heavy metal. it is not something new in physics. it is rock and roll. loud. rude. it glorifies sex and violence. it hates authority. and adolescent boys love it. >> this is it. this is the hot stuff. turn it off for a second so we can talk.
♪ one step away from you a shot in the dark ♪ >> you turn on your television set and you see this weird, beastly presentation. that was birthed in the pit of hell. >> where do they get this information from that i am satan? do i appear to you to have horns? i know i am strange looking but i don't speak like that. >> critics say there's something seriously wrong with metal music. outrageous by design. that it may have contributed to a number of teenaged suicides. >> has rock and roll finally gone too far? well, a growing number of think so. today, they took their case to a u.s. senate hearing. their complaint? that rock lyrics and videos are crossing the line into trash and smut. >> we are asking the recording industry to voluntarily assist parents who are concerned by placing a warning label on music products, "inappropriate for younger children due to
explicit, sexual, or violent lyrics." >> in the '80s, these artists who were pushing boundaries in different ways were bringing those messages and images into our homes. and that provided a political opportunity to push back against it. >> we can say they're senators' wives, ooh, and they're messing around in washington but they obviously have a lot of real concerns. there is a lot they do that i applaud because they are taking responsibility, as citizens. >> i brought along two videos, which i believe are representative the kind of presentation which have caused the furor. ♪ i've got it bad, so bad i'm hot for teacher ♪ >> who is going to decide what's the sexual content of a lyric? who is going to decide what is obscene? same housewives who are spearheading the movement?
>> in all canada, i would tell you it's outrageous filth. if i could find some way, constitutionally, to do away with it, i would. >> fans felt i am capable of making my own decisions about the music i listen to. >> the next witness will be mr. frank zappa. >> the establishment of a rating system, voluntary or otherwise, opens the door to endless parade of moral quality-control programs based on things certain christians don't like. i think you should leave it up to the parent because not-all parents want to keep their children totally ignorant. >> yeah, you and i -- ignorance and educated. >> the woman didn't get the rating system, they wanted. but they did get a commitment to begin applying a printed inscription on the packaging of albums, cassettes, and music videos, warning that they contain blatant-explicit lyrics. >> good rock and roll breaks all the rules.
okay? that's just the way it is. that's the way it always has been. elvis presley was not good for the children, either. >> morning, everybody. i am very pleased to announce, to live aid, which, without a doubt, will be the largest pop concert ever held. >> the two of them were looking to raise as much money as possible for the famine victims in ethiopia. >> when tomorrow's 17-hour fundraising concert starts, sell-out crowds in the stadiums will be joined by a television audience of, perhaps, 1.5 billion people around the world. >> watching live aid on tv was my version of driving to woodstock. and i watched every second of it.
♪ >> the great thing about live aid, it showed that musicians, for me, seem to be the most altruistic people in the world. >> a group whose heart isn't done with ireland. whose spirit is with the world. a group that's never had any problem saying how they feel. u2. >> when u2 play live eight, things have changed. rock and roll was getting serious. muvg music could change the world. bono could change the world. >> u2. formed ten years ago when its members were still school boys is now, arguably, the hottest rock and roll band in the world.
their last album the joshua tree has, so far, sold more than 13 million copies worldwide. >> u2, somehow in the vid yes a video age, were still developing and becoming a great band and maintaining that kind of connection with people. and not getting the message lost in the medium. >> you spent the last ten years finding out how to be in u2. spend the next ten years seeing what u2 can do.
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right now, all around us and so compelling you never miss the fact there's no melody. is a music that is all beat, strong beat, and talk. it's rap music. >> rap music began in harlem in the south bronx on playgrounds like this one. where people would gather to spin records and then, recite their own lyrics, their rap, over the instrumental section. >> the brakes was curtis blow's biggest hit. selling 680,000 copies last year. and hitting the top of the rhythm-and-blues sales charts. >> as a young kid running around with a local-dj crew, i watched the transition from all the
disco music we used to play at all the block parties to slowly, but surely, hip-hop taking over. >> the music underneath rapping is called scratching and it is a process of using two turntables and mixer. making new sounds out of already-existing albums. >> thing that gave life to music in the '80s, for me, was hip-hop. because it took the sounds of the '60s and '70s and brought it to the forefront. ♪ a child is born with no state of mind, blind to the ways of mankind ♪ ♪ because only god knows what you will go through ♪ >> the message was the first hip-hop song that wasn't just a party song. it was talking about what was going on. it was talking about urban decay. it was talking about drugs, crime, prison. all of these things, that were hitting these communities really hard. ♪ smugglerers, scramblers, burglars ♪ >> when the message hit, man, it was like, okay, put that down. what did he just say? pull the record back.
play that, again. ♪ don't push me cause i'm close to the edge ♪ >> everyone knew the game had changed. and it really opened the flood gates for the next generation of rappers. ♪ >> when run dmc came out, they were taking rock-and-roll music, and then putting it together with hip-hop and making something brand new out of it. >> run dmc kind of led zeppelinized hip-hop because it was fit for an arena. knocking the scoreboard down. >> aerosmith had sort of fallen off the map at that point. and sort of brings them back into the fore, and it also breaks run dmc in a much big ware because then you start to get more white kids listening to hip-hop. >> run dmc's latest album,
entitled "raising hell," has sold more than a million copies in just-13 weeks. a first for a rap record. >> the album is called "license to ill." that's a stupid name. ♪ wake up late for school and don't want to go ♪ ♪ you ask your mom please but she still says no ♪ >> hip-hop owas our baby. this is our culture. this is our music. we created it. and then, here come the beastie boys and we were afraid we were going to lose it. ♪ you got to fight for your right to party ♪ >> and then, when we started listening to their music, they really were funky and they could really get busy. so we were like, okay, all right. >> beastie boys come out with people thought would be a pop group. they were straight hip-hop.
beastie boys was dope, you know what i happen? >> "license to ill" really spread like wildfire and introduced a lot of people to hip-hop culture. >> can you give us some definitions of the lls? >> ll stands for ladies, love, legend, long and lean, lover of ladies, red-hot lovers looking for a little, just a lot of ls. >> the guys only be talking about youfrts. how much of a lover. how the women love him to death. you know, how they can throw down. how good they can dance. how bad they are. nobody better not mess with me and all of that kind of foolishness. they -- they won't address the issues. the issues, being, poverty. the issues being, not having political power. you see what i am saying? all of these issues. they should be addressing this with their energy. ♪ planet earth was my place of birth ♪ >> ra kim is the guy who
single- single-handedly changed the phrasing of hip-hop. he came to the world like a poet. >> i learned different rhythms, listening to jazz. i learned different rhythms. so i kind of incorporated that with my rhyme style. you know, not just a regular dum, dum, dum. >> what i am trying to do. i'm trying to set examples for the little kids. you know what i'm saying? got to teach the babies. you know what i'm saying? try to lead them in the right path. >> the summer of 1987, rebel without a pause comes out. it was a call to arms. it was the sound of anger. it was the sound of something boiling under. public enemy literally said we want to be music's worst nightmare. >> public enemy's extreme politics has met almost no raid your air play even on black stations. it's rap for a reason. they call it a mind revolution.
>> "rebel without a pause" was heavily influenced by rakim and heavily influenced by what was just going on. it was really a desperate call to have us being heard. >> you talk about black all the time to a multiracial audience. shouldn't you maybe be thinking about who are the people i've got out here? haven't you got a responsibility to them rather than what you personally -- >> i have a responsibility to my people and my culture, because my people and my culture have been brutalized and ignored for years. ♪ my mother standing in the welfare line ♪ ♪ the way you survive is crime ♪ ♪ my life is over so i might as well speak my mind ♪ >> ice t is the first west coast gangster rap. reality rap. 6:00 in the morning police at my door. ice t did it way before nwa did it. ♪ straight outta compton ♪ ♪ ice cube from a gang called with attitude ♪ ♪ i got a sawed off ♪ ♪ squeeze the trigger and bodies are hauled off ♪ >> the los angeles rap group nwa
drew fire from police because its album “straight outta compton” talked in brutal and vulgar language about retaliating against cops for their nwa gang sweeps in the l.a. area. >> nwa gave us the gritty, grimy gang-banging streets of compton. this is what's going on with us. ♪ as i leave believe i'm stomping ♪ ♪ when i come back boy i'm coming straight outta compton ♪ s a super hydrating serum enriched with vitamin b3, in a lightweight formula it doesn't settle into your lines. age perfect foundation by l'oréal paris we are worth it. new dove men deodorant is different.
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♪ i want my mtv ♪ you can talk about videos, but in the '80s the actual sound of what popular music was and what was accepted as a sound, a drum sound or keyboard sound or bass line sound changed profoundly over the course of the decade. ♪ she drives me crazy like no one else ♪ ♪ she drives me crazy and i can't help myself ♪ >> coming to the end of the '80s like watching a kaleidoscope. you open it up and you see a little bit of everything. ♪ the love shack is a little old place where we can get together
♪ >> it was the time when everybody was getting involved and everybody was expressing themselves loudly. we are having the best time ever. ♪ never gonna give you up never gonna let you down ♪ ♪ never gonna run around and desert you ♪ >> every audience needs to get fed. you know, we'd fed the pop audience. but where's the rock and roll? ♪ oh, we're halfway there oh, living on a prayer ♪ ♪ take my hand we'll make it i swear ♪ >> bon jovi comes in with a huge record. ♪ pour some sugar on me ♪ >> def leppard. fantastic record. ♪ pour some sugar on me ♪ >> and that begins to bring that kind of music back. ♪ pour your sugar on me ♪ >> at the end of the '80s, everybody came to the same conclusion simultaneously.
something new needs to happen here, and it's got to be real-sounding, more garage, less produced. ♪ ♪ i need an easy friend ♪ >> this music that was bubbling out of places like portland and seattle, and bands like nirvana that weren't looking to fit in to what was being played on mtv or what was being played on radio. ♪ i can see you every night ♪ >> eventually radio and mtv came to them. >> the seeds of what will happen in the next decade are already all there by the end of the '80s. college rock like r.e.m. was something new entirely. ♪ follow me, yeah follow me i got my spine i've got my orange crush ♪ >> the way that peter buck
played guitar and the way that stipe sang where the voice was incredible but you couldn't quite figure out what he was saying, it just made them more alluring and mysterious, you could get why that band would become huge. ♪ >> it wasn't new wave, it wasn't a new romantic. they started calling it alternative music. ♪ it's the end of the world as we know it ♪ ♪ it's the end of the world as we know it ♪ ♪ and i feel fine ♪ ♪ fine fine fine fine ♪ >> you know, this is the thing about the '80s. everyone thinks it's about crazy haircuts, lots of makeup, insane clothes, and it was. but the thing about this music that lasts is that their songs were so good. >> you can go back and listen to those records, from the engineering to the musicianship to the writing and to the performance of it. it surpasses most music.
>> everybody had a story, and they wanted to tell it. the artists that were coming through the tv and into your lives. ♪ everybody wants to rule the world ♪ >> i'll say that the music of the '80s is more effective than what came to us in the '60s simply because all of us were included this time. no decade was more effective in dance music, in politics, in different genres than the '80s. there will never, ever be another decade like it, ever. ♪ everybody wants to rule the world ♪ ♪ there's a room where the light won't find you ♪ ♪ holding hands while the walls come tumbling down ♪ ♪ when they do i'll be right behind you ♪ ♪ so glad we've almost made it so sad they have to fade it ♪ ♪ everybody wants to rule the world ♪
it's probably the most important cultural event in the history of america. and a whole new generation of freaks. >> what guys seem to get off on. they like these high-energy sort of events. >> sight and sound and soul are your pleasure, you can bet your bottom dollar we got them, baby. >> unless you've been living in a sealed cave, you probably noticed that america's latest craze is disco dancing. >> this is punk rock, and its purpose is to promote violence, sex and destruction in that order. >> rock and roll is pure stamina! ♪ ♪ ♪